The Access Control Proximity Card

ID cards had a great effect on the security of many businesses. When proximity card was introduced, it’s was intended for identification purposes only. Introduction of proximity cards also bring convenience to its user.

With the need for increased security in organizations that are vulnerable to terrorist attacks or sabotage it is vitally important that the most secure systems of entry to departments and employee identity cards are used. There are many advances now in the ID card that make it as secure as possible with magnetic strips, watermarks and other devices used to prevent duplication and forgery. It is paramount for an organizations security department to be assisted as far as possible by infallible devices that ensure all round protection from any threats.

Buying a plastic card printer is a good investment for such an organization as cards can be customized to the company’s specification and people outside that organization do not have details of the security measures implanted in such cards. The magnetic strips and watermarking designed to make cards more difficult to copy could be augmented by the inclusion of the company’s own security measures.

It would also mean that visitors to the site could have a personal ID card prepared for them prior to the visit thus eliminating the easy “Visitor” ID used by so many companies. In a large organization it is a small investment to lay out producing extra safeguards for the protection of employees, visitors, and management.

A Proximity card is supposed to be a secure measure for passing from one department to another. It has a small electric field that is picked up by a reader from about 1″ to 18″ from the reader. The reason for this type of card is more for speed and convenience than any security measure but attached to a retractable badge reel it can be useful.

The main problem with these cards is that each company is given a facility number and cards are then numbered upwards to the number required but as there is no official control on the system two companies could share the same facility number thus meaning duplicate cards exist. Again if the organization invested in its own technology to produce these cards it would ensure that the security was the best.

The Photo ID card is a system much used all over the world with passports being the obvious example. There are obviously security questions relating to these and on the internet there are unscrupulous companies offering to alter photographs and retouch photographs on ID cards making a mockery of the system. It also means that the person checking the card needs to be alert at all times to ensure that the person presenting the card is accurately depicted in the photograph.

Unfortunately human error is one of the main failings in this system as if there are a huge number of people presenting these cards the holders are often given a cursory glance and if they slightly resemble the photo then they are passed thru. Such a card could only be used in conjunction with other security measures to ensure correct identification. It is amazing that this system has survived for so long at passport control as it is a very flawed system when used on its own.

This was a guest article from Catherine Williams.

The author recommends Safecard ID for information on  PVC card, HID Prox Card and badge reel.

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